Wheres Ray/Wendy yr 2

Monday, April 28, 2014

Rifle Falls State Park part II

Hi again,
 Two posts in one day wow! Not that we have done so much but in the mountains of Colorado we have almost no signal on our Verizon air card.
  We took a short 5 mile drive to Rifle Falls State Park. Yeah everything around here is called rifle something or other. The story goes a exploration troop was camped by the creek and one of the soldiers left his rifle behind and had to return to get it. There are a few variations to the name story. On another note Rifle, Co is the only town with that name in the U.S.
  Back to Rifle Falls was established as a state park in 1966. Prior to that it was a tourist ranch and once the site of a hydroelectric dam. Today you can camp in the 13 site campground (small rvs only) or use one of the day use picnic areas.

 Today  the triple 70 ft. waterfall is a popular photo shoot because of its lush green area created from the falls constant mist. As one can imagine also a great backdrop for wedding pictures.
The falls is formed over limestone and along both sides of the falls are unique limestone caves. We thought these were pretty cool, almost looking like coral and flow rock. A very amazing place.
 Above the falls you can follow a trail to the Rifle (again) Falls State fish hatchery. In one area along the way there is a natural cascading falls. It serves a valuable purpose as a filter and oxygen enhancer aiding plant and wildlife.
  After the falls we drove a bit further down the road to see the famous ice caves. Oddly this is village controlled and required a special park pass. The road passes through a canyon that is popular with rock climbers. We saw several groups along the way.
 Then we finally get to the famous ice caves. ?? Well not quite what we expected, there was some ice and it was a pretty blue looking from the cave out. Just not quite the thrill of a lifetime.
  Funny how some things you think are going to be great and are just soso then you see something that barely gets a mention and you are in total awe. You just never know.
  On the way home (sounds like a Wendy vacation don't it?) we made a detour to check out one more state park, and one not named rifle.) Harvey Gap State Park is on a 160 acre reservoir and a day use only park. The lake is a beautiful blue/green color and prime northern/muskie fishing. It looked to be a good picnic area but not to much else.
 Friday we planned a hike day, and Wendy had seen trail hat offered a view of a Colorado arch. Can you guess the name? You win--Rifle Arch, down Rifle Arch Trail is 150 feet wide and 60 feet high.
 We walked the 1-1/2 mile hike mostly on a moderate uphill. When we got to the arch Wendy scrambled up some good rocks to get the clear through view.
I wish I had brought my camera as she really got up there. And boy did her legs felt it the next day. The things one must do for the perfect shot. Side note the view then wasn't that great.


  1. All kinds of different landscapes to see there. Nice hike!

  2. I'm playing catch-up today, very behind in my blog reading! These are some gorgeous places, the color of that lake doesn't seem like it could even be real.